Fri, Jun 20, 2008 - Page 5 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ PHILIPPINES

Naked run held early

Members of a fraternity at the University of the Philippines held their annual ritual of running naked on campus six months early on Wednesday — by official request — to celebrate the state-run school’s centennial anniversary. Hundreds of cheering students lined the main campus avenue, jostling for positions with their digital and mobile phone cameras. The “Oblation Run” — named for the university’s iconic symbol of a naked man with outstretched arms that symbolizes his selfless offering of himself to the nation — started in 1977 as a gimmick by the Alpha Phi Omega fraternity to promote the screening of a movie about oppressed plantation workers called Naked Hero. The film had been banned by the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

■ THAILAND

Transvestites get own loos

A school has introduced toilets for its transvestite students after a survey revealed that 200 cross-dressing students felt uncomfortable using the male toilets but were not always welcome in the female lavatories. Kampang school, attended by 2,600 pupils in the rural northeastern province of Sisaket, unveiled the toilets when the new academic year began in May. The symbol for the toilets shows a figure split in two, the male half in blue and the female in red.

■ SOUTH KOREA

Endangered dog cloned

A South Korean team led by disgraced stem cell scientist Hwang Woo-suk said yesterday it had created 17 clones of an endangered dog breed popular in China. The Sooam Biotech Research Foundation said in a statement that the cloned Tibetan mastiff dogs were born in April, two months after being requested by the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The foundation said another institute conducted DNA tests and confirmed that all 17 dogs had been cloned from one Tibetan mastiff. However, an official of Kogene Biotech, the Seoul-based institute specializing in DNA analysis that did the DNA tests, said it did not to take its own samples from the dogs and that the samples it tested were provided by the foundation.

■ AUSTRALIA

Couple charged with murder

A couple was charged yesterday with murder and torture in the deaths of their 18-month-old twins, whose decomposing bodies were found by their older sister this week. The mother, 30, and father, 28, who were not identified, had initially been charged with neglect after the woman told police the twins had starved to death, but the prosecutor raised the charges during their court appearance. The murder and torture charges carry potential life sentences. Australians have been horrified by the deaths of the two children, who had been dead at least a week before police were called to the middle-class suburban home. The mother told the court she found the boy and girl dead last week, on Sunday or Monday, but did nothing about it, prosecutor Michelle Clark told Brisbane Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

■ CHINA

Hijacker shot and killed

Police shot and killed a knife-wielding man who demanded guns and 1 million yuan (US$145,000) in cash during a bus hijacking, state press said yesterday. Police shot the man on Wednesday evening as he held a large knife to the neck of a woman passenger aboard the bus in Guizhou Province, Xinhua news agency said. Police said the man demanded two guns, 500 bullets and the money after hijacking the bus and beginning a hostage siege that lasted for about 90 minutes, the report said.

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